Snow good for hooding, goose hunting

Well that was a lot of fun! Nothing like a small blizzard of sorts to make the outdoors a whole new world.

I hate the cold, but I love the snow. Waterfowlers were excited hoping it would push birds to the ground, and they were not disappointed.

The winds were out of control on Saturday but that didn’t stop the boys from hitting the blinds. If they weren’t shooting ducks, they were cooking in the blind out of the wind. Because there is nothing like a fresh scrapple and egg breakfast in a duck blind.

Geese were coming to ground looking for open fields to feed and that was a chore for them with the 12 inches of snow we had in Sussex County

Fishing holes

Ponds up north froze over and down here in the lower, slower. That didn’t stop a few folks from looking for holes to fish for bass, pickerel, and perch.

We tried a few spots but the ponds and creeks iced over fast. It was six degrees out at one point. The inland bays even froze over in the flats.

Along the shores of the Delaware bay, pancake ice was pushed up on to shore and stacked by the tides. Especially near Woodland Beach. That will put a damper on any fishing but makes for some great photography — something many of us do in the off season, when we aren’t tweaking our gear or tying rigs.

Hoodin’

So we are all sitting around watching the snow fall Saturday morning, wondering what do we do now? The roads were a mess, but we did our normal storm chasing updates for everyone, and then after that there wasn’t much to do, or was there?

Well aside from hitting a few restaurants, everyone we know is off work. One thing we learned a long time ago living on flatland is you can have fun in the snow you just have to get creative. I look at the crew and say, “I can take the hood off the old Isuzu Rodeo if you all want and let’s go to the house.”

They just look at me funny. At this point I realize they have never heard of, nor seen anyone car hoodin’.

Now I am on a mission. We did talk about sledding down the Indian River Inlet bridge, but we decided that would probably be a bad idea, and it is, never do that.

I tell everyone meet me at the house in the morning let’s let the snow and wind stop, because no way am I getting out in that wind. The next morning we pop the hood off the old truck and I tied a 50-foot rope to it with a harness or bridle to hold on to, attached that to the truck, and we were rock and roll.

The bonfire was lit so we had some of that good old outdoor heat and we were ready. If you haven’t gone car hooding you have no idea what you are missing. The key is the hood you use. The older cars with the curved hoods up front are great to use. A Volkswagen bug hood is the best to use but they are very hard to find since they are so collectible. I have a nine acre field next to my house and my own fields so we had plenty of room. Something that is key when you are whipping across the snow at 20-30 miles per hour sitting on a sheet of slick metal. This is known as Sussex County sleigh ride, or car hoodin’.

Make sure you don’t just do this in a random field you need permission, or you are trespassing.

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